Mary Jean Chan
and Luke Kennard
Two Contemporary Poets
The Sky Room, MK Gallery
Saturday 21 September, 12.15pm: £5
Free tickets available for 16 - 25 year olds: click for details
Mary Jean Chan is a poet and editor from Hong Kong. Her pamphlet, A Hurry of English, was published by Ignition Press (Oxford Brookes Poetry Centre) in 2018, and was followed by a debut full collection, Flèche, published by Faber in July 2019. Central to the collection is the figure of the poet’s mother, whose memories of political turmoil in 20th century China are sensitively threaded through the book. As complex themes of multilingualism, queerness, psychoanalysis and cultural history emerge, so too does a richly imagined personal, maternal and national biography.
Shortlisted for the 2017 Forward Prize for Best Single Poem, she is Co-Editor of Oxford Poetry, a lecturer in poetry at Oxford Brookes University and a PhD candidate in Creative Writing at Royal Holloway, the University of London. A Ledbury Poetry Critic, she has written reviews for The Guardian, The Poetry School and The Hong Kong Review of Books.
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Luke Kennard is a poet and novelist who lives and works in Birmingham. His first book, The Solex Brothers, won an Eric Gregory Award from the Society of Authors in 2005. His second, The Harbour Beyond the Movie, made him the youngest writer to be shortlisted for the Forward Prize for Best Collection in 2007. His fifth collection of poems, Cain, was published by Penned in the Margins in 2016 and shortlisted for the International Dylan Thomas Prize.
In 2014 he was named one of the Next Generation Poets by the Poetry Book Society in their once per-decade list. His first novel, The Transition, was published by 4th Estate in 2017 and longlisted for the Desmond Elliot Debut Novel Award.
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